Welcome to Linux Knowledge Base and Tutorial
"The place where you learn linux"
Connect for Kids

 Create an AccountHome | Submit News | Your Account  

Tutorial Menu
Linux Tutorial Home
Table of Contents

· Introduction to Operating Systems
· Linux Basics
· Working with the System
· Shells and Utilities
· Editing Files
· Basic Administration
· The Operating System
· The X Windowing System
· The Computer Itself
· Networking
· System Monitoring
· Solving Problems
· Security
· Installing and Upgrading
· Linux and Windows

Man Pages
Linux Topics
Test Your Knowledge

Site Menu
Site Map
Copyright Info
Terms of Use
Privacy Info
Masthead / Impressum
Your Account

Private Messages

News Archive
Submit News
User Articles
Web Links


The Web

Who's Online
There are currently, 61 guest(s) and 0 member(s) that are online.

You are an Anonymous user. You can register for free by clicking here



Current HOWTO: LILO mini-HOWTO

LILO mini-HOWTO: Accessing Huge Disks When the BIOS Can't Next Previous Contents

7. Accessing Huge Disks When the BIOS Can't

Notice: 1GB is "Huge"? Well, once upon a time...

The system in my office has a 1GB IDE drive. The BIOS can only see the first 504 MB of the IDE. (Where MB means 2**10 bytes, not 10**6 bytes.) So I have MS-DOS on a 350 MB partition /dev/hda1 and my Linux root on a 120 MB partition /dev/hda2.

Hauke Laging (hauke@laging.de) and Bob Hall (bhall@hallfire.org) have noticed a small mistake above, so they've suggested a MB to be 2**20 bytes rather than 2**10 bytes. Thanks for correction. In addition, Hauke would like to learn more about what he called, "character codes on LILO startup, when LILO dies with LI, LI-, LIL- or whatever". I'd appreciate a contribution related to this issue or a valid web link to that.

Here it is (a contribution by Zohar Stolar, zohar@numericable.fr):

B. LILO boot error codes


Thanks for link.

MS-DOS was unable to install itself correctly when the drive was fresh. Novell DOS 7 had the same problem. Luckily for me, "Options by IBM" forgot to put the "OnTrack" diskette in the box with the drive. The drive was supposed to come with a product called "OnTrack Disk Manager." If you only have MSDOS, I guess you have to use it.

So I made a partition table with Linux' fdisk. MSDOS-6.2 refused to install itself in /dev/hda1. It said something like ``this release of MS-DOS is for new installations. Your computer already has MS-DOS so you need to get an upgrade release from your dealer.'' Actually, the disk was brand new.

What a crock! So I ran Linux' fdisk again and deleted partition 1 from the table. This satisfied MS-DOS 6.2 which proceeded to create the exact same partition 1 I had just deleted and installed itself. MS-DOS 6.2 wrote its Master Boot Record on the drive, but it couldn't boot.

Luckily I had a Slackware kernel on floppy (made by the Slackware installation program "setup"), so I booted Linux and wrote Lilo over MS-DOS' broken MBR. This works. Here is the /etc/lilo.conf file I used:

boot = /dev/hda
map = /lilo-map
delay = 100
ramdisk = 0             # Turns off ramdisk in Slackware kernel
timeout = 100
disk = /dev/hda         # BIOS only sees first 500 MB.
   bios = 0x80          # specifies the first IDE.
   sectors = 63         # get the numbers from your drive's docs.
   heads = 16
   cylinders = 2100
image = /vmlinuz
  append = "hd=2100,16,63"
  root = /dev/hda2
  label = linux
  vga = extended
other = /dev/hda1
  label = msdos
  table = /dev/hda
  loader = /boot/chain.b

After I installed these systems, I verified that the partition containing the zImage, boot.b, map, chain.b, and message files can use an msdos file system, as long as it is not "stackered" or "doublespaced." So I could have made the DOS partition on /dev/hda1 500 MB.

I have also learned that "OnTrack" would have written a partition table starting a few dozen bytes into the drive, instead of at the beginning, and it is possible to hack the Linux IDE driver to work around this problem. But installing would have been impossible with the precompiled Slackware kernel. Eventually, IBM sent me an "OnTrack" diskette. I called OnTrack's technical support. They told me Linux is broken because Linux doesn't use BIOS. I gave their diskette away.

Next Previous Contents

The Linux Tutorial completely respects the rights of authors and artists to decide for themselves if and how their works can be used, independent of any existing licenses. This means if you are the author of any document presented on this site and do no wish it to be displayed as it is on this site or do not wish it to be displayed at all, please contact us and we will do our very best to accommodate you. If we are unable to accommodate you, we will, at your request, remove your document as quickly as possible.

If you are the author of any document presented on this site and would like a share of the advertising revenue, please contact us using the standard Feedback Form.

Help us cut cost by not downloading the whole site!
Use of automated download sofware ("harvesters") such as wget, httrack, etc. causes the site to quickly exceed its bandwidth limitation and therefore is expressedly prohibited. For more details on this, take a look here



Security Code
Security Code
Type Security Code

Don't have an account yet? You can create one. As a registered user you have some advantages like theme manager, comments configuration and post comments with your name.

Help if you can!

Amazon Wish List

Did You Know?
The Linux Tutorial welcomes your suggestions and ideas.


Tell a Friend About Us

Bookmark and Share

Web site powered by PHP-Nuke

Is this information useful? At the very least you can help by spreading the word to your favorite newsgroups, mailing lists and forums.
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters. Articles are the property of their respective owners. Unless otherwise stated in the body of the article, article content (C) 1994-2013 by James Mohr. All rights reserved. The stylized page/paper, as well as the terms "The Linux Tutorial", "The Linux Server Tutorial", "The Linux Knowledge Base and Tutorial" and "The place where you learn Linux" are service marks of James Mohr. All rights reserved.
The Linux Knowledge Base and Tutorial may contain links to sites on the Internet, which are owned and operated by third parties. The Linux Tutorial is not responsible for the content of any such third-party site. By viewing/utilizing this web site, you have agreed to our disclaimer, terms of use and privacy policy. Use of automated download software ("harvesters") such as wget, httrack, etc. causes the site to quickly exceed its bandwidth limitation and are therefore expressly prohibited. For more details on this, take a look here

PHP-Nuke Copyright © 2004 by Francisco Burzi. This is free software, and you may redistribute it under the GPL. PHP-Nuke comes with absolutely no warranty, for details, see the license.
Page Generation: 0.90 Seconds